Pondering a peculiar "Pastel YB OD" hatchling

I have a lovely pastel YB het clown female who paired this season with my super OD het clown male.



Poorly lit romantic entanglement

We missed clowns (darn!), but one hatchling is very interesting, almost leopard-like:

The whole clutch is very, very orange (pre-shed):

There is one other hatchling in the 2019 clutch that has some funky, fun pattern going on ventrally, and whose orange color stands out among his siblings, too:

The mother (pastel yb het clown) produced one clutch prior to this one (2019), in 2017, which was sired by our clown male who has a blade-like trait that seems to be inherited dominantly/co-dominantly (haven’t tried for a super yet).
2017 clown sire & a 2017 hatchling:

In that clutch there were also some exceptional pastel yb het clowns with bright oranges and great blushing in the saddles (kind of poor lighting, but a good example of how far our photography has come!):

We held one of them back and he’s still quite stunning at ~800g (shown next to a ‘normal’ here):

I know stored sperm can create surprises, but in this case, I do not believe the clown sire from 2016-17 helps answer why this 2019 ‘leopard-y’ hatchling has such a busy pattern and so much color.

We do have a leopard BP in our collection, but she’s female (and laid 6 beautiful eggs for us this season), so I’m running out of simple explanations.

Perhaps just a blip in development during melanocyte migration (and if so, not heritable)? Did anyone ever figure out what caused the ‘spontaneous jungle’ phenomena? I’m a big fan of oddities, so I tend to note any pattern or color abnormalities, but this one seemed worth sharing.


“Jungle” is, exactly as you note, a random spontaneous occurrence that does not seem to have any rhyme or reason to it. The most likely cause is some kind of stress event during incubation (rapid temp flux, sudden humidity drop, etc.) but it is just as likely to be a random one-off down the the random stochastic combination of genes/gene activation.

That said, I have found that OD and YB tend to play funny with each other quite frequently and my guess is that that is what you are seeing here.